When a worker contracts mesothelioma, asbestosis, or lung cancer from exposure to asbestos, monetary damages may be recovered should the worker choose to file a claim against the company, or companies, responsible for the exposure. That being said, asbestos cases are complicated, so hiring an attorney who is experienced with asbestos and mesothelioma cases will help to ensure that an award is not only received, but is also of an appropriate amount.
One of the complexities involved in asbestos-related cases is that asbestos exposure takes place over time, and as a result, the disease may not appear until years after the exposure. It isn’t uncommon for the signs of illness to appear 10 years, or even up to 50 years, after exposure to asbestos, which is a much different scenario than a workplace injury that occurs as a sudden event that is more easily documented, with easier access to witnesses. Unfortunately, the defendants may try to use this broad passage of time against a victim, claiming that the victim may have contracted the disease through their own lifestyle choices or other means that exclude them from responsibility. An experienced mesothelioma attorney will anticipate such an approach and be prepared to counter with factual information that will serve to strengthen your case.
There may be difficulty in locating the responsible parties, as companies may change hands or even cease to exist during the timeframe between the exposure and the diagnosis of disease. However, trust funds for asbestos victims may have been set aside by corporations that are now closed, and an experienced mesothelioma attorney will know how to locate these funds and help you file a successful claim.
The added layer of difficulty is the statute of limitations that applies to asbestos-related cases. In New York, a victim has only three years after diagnosis to file a claim, and families have only two years to file suit after a loved one dies of asbestos exposure.
A mesothelioma case is worth pursuing due to the probability of recovering substantial monetary damages, so it’s imperative to contact an asbestos lawyer as soon as possible to review the facts of your case.
If you are suffering from mesothelioma or another asbestos-related disease, medical treatments, recovering, and spending time with loved ones are most likely your highest priorities. Our attorneys understand the obstacles you are facing, and we will handle your case without putting undue strain on you or your loved ones. You will decide how much or how little you wish to be involved in the actual proceedings of the case.
After meeting with you to get an overview of your situation, we will begin the process of gathering the medical and employment documents needed to support the facts of your case. We will also conduct interviews with family members, co-workers, and other witnesses who may provide details that support your claim. We will also investigate the companies involved in your asbestos exposure and whether or not they have established a trust fund to compensate victims who present claims. If this is the case, our mesothelioma attorneys are skilled at submitting successful claims, and you may receive compensation fairly quickly. If the company does not have a trust, the process will take more time, but rarely does an asbestos case reach trial. Usually, they are settled out of court prior to the trial date.
Often, when a victim is in particularly poor health, an asbestos case can be expedited. If there is no urgency, it may take months to reach a resolution. It’s not uncommon for the defendant’s counsel to try to prolong the litigation process, but your attorney will work to prevent that while allowing you to focus on your health and well-being.
If the plaintiff in an asbestos-related case dies before the case is resolved, the decedent’s family may be able to continue with the action as the plaintiff or file a wrongful death lawsuit to seek compensation for medical bills, funeral costs, loss of income, and emotional suffering.
Your best chance of getting the compensation you deserve in a mesothelioma case is to work with an experienced attorney who knows the mechanics, as well as the nuances, of asbestos claims.
To arrange a free evaluation of your case and explore your legal options, call Macaluso & Fafinski today at 718.364.4000 (in the Bronx) or 212.480.9000 (from elsewhere in New York), or simply fill out our convenient online form, and we will respond as soon as possible. The offices of Macaluso & Fafinski are conveniently located to serve the five-borough area and its residents.